The boy looked into his mother’s eyes, silently pleading. This was where he was from, but he did not want to grow up here. He did not want to fill his father’s shoes. He did not want to lead the life laid out for him. He wanted to grow up and get the world. He wanted to make his mother proud. But..
He would grow up to be a rapist.
He was born in a village, in one of the many villages of India. The name did not matter. They were all the same. The men ruled, earned the food, selected the breads and decided the layout of the plate. The women veiled their faces, cleaned the houses and laid the plates. From the very start, he was taught that he was to be the man of the house- the one in charge. He often listened to his mother, but ultimately did what his father said. He did not understand this skewed dynamic. His father came in and out at odd hours and no one seemed to raise a finger.
As he grew up, he somehow adjusted to this implied understanding of the sexes. The men decided the rules and the women played by it. When they didn’t, the men forced themselves on the women and no one batted an eye.
It never changed.
Men had an innate power, supremacy. They danced to their own tunes, listened to their own demons and satisfied their insatiable hunger.
It wasn’t his fault really. He was born in a system where men could do anything. He was born in a system where the very runners of the system discarded women as objects of chained will. If a woman does not agree, rape her and if she had any physical connections before marriage, hang her. An alleged rape was garbed as a relationship gone wrong. Hence, the woman was now trying to avenge her petty self by asking for a death sentence to a man who forced her to have sex with her. Boys will be boys, they say. Men will be men. And women? Well, they can be whomever they want to. As long as the men rule, they will end up being nothing.
And just when this asphyxiated landscape began changing colors, it was dragged right back into the abyss of depravity. The very public and downright insulting and ridiculous remarks by Abu Azmi and Mulayam Singh Yadav are testimony to the illusion that we all perceived as progress. Our society is still as dolled up with the salacious paint of inhumanity.
And so, the boy, now a man ended up in the same system. In the sad excuse for a life that he led, he raped three women, impregnated one, married another and spent the last leg of his miserable life condemning rape victims and upholding the frivolous and instinct driven nature of men. He could have been so much more. But he grew up to be a rapist.